Shari Bryant, co-president of Jay-Z’s Roc Nation, was destined to thrive in the music business.

Growing up in 1199, the East Harlem, NY, apartment complex where Cam’ron and Damon Dash also lived, Bryant shot her shot in 1999 to intern for the latter at Roc-A-Fella Records, Fortune reports. At age 16, the Harlem native landed the opportunity of a lifetime, and Damon Dash invited her down to the studio’s office.

“Nobody knew I was there, no one was expecting me. They were like, ‘who are you?,’” Bryant recalled to Fortune about her first day at Roc-A-Fella Records’ office as an intern for Damon Dash. “He finally comes in maybe like an hour later and he’s like, ‘Oh, yes, this is Shari. She’s from my building, and make sure that she learns everything that’s going on.’”

Almost three decades later, Bryant has gone from learning under Damon Dash to working her way into the C-suite in the music business as a Black woman leading at Roc Nation.

“When I walked into that company in 1999, I never looked back because I was able to see women that look like me and it made me feel a sense of belonging,” Bryant said. “I saw my mother, I saw my aunt. Not literally, but that’s what the representations stood for me at that time.”

Although Bryant went on to work at Warner Bros. Records, Atlantic Records, and Alamo Records, she found her way back to Roc Nation.

Alongside Bryant at the entertainment company is Omar Grant, who has served as co-president with her since 2019, according to the outlet. The Bronx, NY, native previously interned for Beyoncé’s longtime publicist, Yvette Noel-Schure. Through the internship, he was able to meet Mathew Knowles, Beyoncé’s father and former manager, which led to him being an assistant tour manager on Beyoncé’s “Dangerously in Love.”

“I treated that internship like it was a real job because I fell in love with just everything about it,” Grant said. “I fell in love with the artists coming through, the way people move, the way they wrote.”

From then on, Grant went from working as a tour manager for all members of Destiny’s Child to securing A&R roles at other record labels, according to the outlet. In addition, he ended up meeting Jay-Z, Roc Nation Co-Founder and Vice Chairman Jay Brown, and Roc Nation Co-Founder Ty Ty Smith, and they became mentors. 

“When they started Roc Nation, probably like the first year in, they were looking for A&Rs and building their team,” Grant said. “They remembered me because I always kept in contact, I always saw them around, and it just kind of came full circle.”

Leading at Roc Nation marks a full circle moment for both Bryant and Grant. As they each have strengths in marketing and A&R, respectively, the music executive duo utilize their skills to support artists and develop the next generation of “legacy artists.”